Walmart Redefines Its Fashion Private Brands

As it continues to grow and evolve its private brand portfolio Walmart is introducing new private brands for women, kids, and plus-size female customers. The move comes as internet rival Amazon has introduced dozens of new brands. While big box rival Target has radically reinvented its home décor and fashion private brands with more than a dozen new brands

The new private brand includes Time and Tru in women’s wear, a portion of which will replace the activewear licensed brand DanskinNow, which has been licensed from Iconix Brand Group for the last ten years. Walmarts decision to grow its own brand will save the retaileras much as $15.5 million in 2018 in royalty payments to Iconix.

Walmart currently licenses 3 other brands from Iconic: Starter (men’s and boys’ apparel) OP/Ocean Pacific (lifestyle apparel/swimsuits) and Waverly (fabric and crafts). Sales of those brands at Walmart accounted for 13% of Iconix’s $368.4 million in revenue in 2016.

In addition to Time and Tru Walmart has introduced along Terra & Sky in plus-size apparel and Wonder Nation for kids. The George brand, which Walmart brought over from Asda, will be repositioned as a men’s brand. The new brands will replace older private labels such as White Stag, Faded Glory, and Just My Size.

The retailer is “launching new brands, not labels,” according to one of the slides presented at the meeting, which took place at the retailer’s headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas, in late January. “We will cover every aspect of fashion.”

In the new private brand portfolio, approximately 10% of the apparel offerings will be “trend right” and refreshed quarterly, while 40% will be “fashion basics” that stay on rack six to nine months. The remainder will be core basics like tank tops, will be in stock year-round.

Expect to see a similar emphasis on private brand home décor as Walmart moves to compete more effectively against Amazon and Target.

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Christopher Durham
Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.